WORI: Ending Violence Against Women In Uganda
SF Yoga had the incredible opportunity to head to Uganda in 2016 to work directly with WORI Uganda. WORI is a women's organization run by all local Ugandans, mostly women. Their mission is to contribute to ending violence against women and economically empower women to lead better lives!
When we were in Uganda, they were in the planning process of building a women's shelter and now, less than two years later, they have almost completed this project. We spoke with Kigere Rose, the Executive Director of this amazing organization to learn a little bit more about what is happening with the women's shelter.
Can you tell us a little bit more about WORI?
WORI was founded in 2007 by three young women in Jinja, Uganda. The organization was formed to respond to the epidemic of gender based violence (GBV) and poverty in Uganda. The organization has a special interest in the plight of women and youth as they are most susceptible to vulnerability psychologically, physically, socially, and economically. We work in the areas of human rights, women's rights, advocacy, awareness and education. We educate people in leadership development, sexual and reproductive rights, and economic empowerment. Our main aim is to enhance the capacity of women to support their personal development and health.
What is the inspiration behind the women's shelter?
We have been leading GBV campaigns aimed at preventing violence against women in communities for 10 years now. As we have continued to do the awareness, we see more and more women every year who come to us and report cases of abuse. They come to is need of counseling, legal aid, emergency medical care but most importantly they have always come to seek shelter. Our inspiration came from the fact that we were constrained with the inability to provide them with everything they needed. We knew we had to build a shelter that could support us in providing women with a more holistic response to GBV. We have faith that this holistic approach will give women a better chance to exploit their potential. We believe this will also enable their children and families to benefit from this empowerment.
Will this be the first women's shelter in Uganda?
Uganda has a few GBV shelters but WORI's shelter will be the first shelter which will be a one stop center. We will be able to provide a holistic approach to those who have been victims of GBV.
How do you see the women's shelter helping the people of Uganda?
This shelter will support victims of GBV and help them heal from the trauma. We will help empower these women, help them to regain their self esteem and support them in becoming economically independent. When they are living in this empowered way, they will show their children this new way of being. This will also help the younger generation to view women and violence differently. This will lead to less violence against women and a less violent society.
What is #vocalwomen movement?
#vocalwomen is the hashtag we created with our twitter page. We share our stories here and share with the world, the impact of our work. We want to help share the voices of women who continually go unheard. Please follow us on twitter and read our stories and share with us your inspirational stories as well.